Dancing Astronaut’s Most Anticipated Performances of Ultra 2016
DA's Most Anticipated Performances of Ultra 2016
Miami Music Week has officially begun, and with it, the final countdown to Ultra Music Festival. This year’s lineup is arguably one of the strongest in the event’s history, bringing together some long-awaited reunions, while providing a platform for younger artists to make their mark on the festival’s storied stages.
To help navigate the circuitous schedule, which boasts over 150 sets across 8 stages, we’ve highlighted our most anticipated performances of the weekend. Whether you’re a UMF veteran or it’s your first time at the festival, don’t miss these sets.
Check out the full set times here.
There is perhaps no performance as heavily anticipated as Pendulum at this year’s festival. The seminal live drum ‘n’ bass outfit will reunite for their first official show together since disbanding in 2012. With a prime position on the main stage on Sunday for the final set, the group have essentially been tasked with closing out the entire festival. There’s no telling what surprises Pendulum will have in store, but we can’t help but believe there will be some new music to make the rounds as well. Billed as “Pendulum – Knife Party,” the show will presumably feature a large portion of Rob and Gareth’s Knife Party side-project as well.
Set Time: Sunday, 9:40pm, Mainstage
Eric Prydz has packed more in the first three months of 2016 than many artists will accomplish this year. The Swedish producer released his debut full-length artist album in February, and has been touring cross-country with his Epic 4.0 tour to sold out venues in the interim. Prydz makes his return to A State of Trance after his unforgettable debut on the stage on the third day of the festival in 2015. With both a vast catalog and untold numbers of unreleased IDs at his disposal, the legend promises to deliver an unforgettable performance at ASOT in 2016.
Set Time: Sunday, 7:30pm, A State of Trance
Photo credit: Rukes
Ultra’s Resistance stage boasts no shortage of compelling talent this year. From veterans like John Digweed and Sasha, to flourishing DJs like Hot Since 82 and Jackmaster, the curation this year is stellar to say the least. On Saturday night, the hype belongs to Eric Estornel, or Maceo Plex,who will close out the stage with a headlining performance. It’s no secret that Maceo has been on an absolute tear the past couple of years, achieving multiple Beatport top tracks and demolishing the tour circuit. Backed by the futuristic production of the Resistance stage, his performance from Ultra will surely be a spectacle in its own right.
Set Time: Saturday, 10:55pm, Resistance Stage
Deadmau5’s forthcoming performance at Armin van Buuren’s A State of Trance stage has arguably been several years in the making. After the producers publicly spatted on Twitter before Ultra in 2014 and deadmau5 declined Armin’s invitation at the time to play the ASOT stage, it seems that the unlikely proposal is coming to fruition. Social media antics aside, Joel Zimmerman remains a force in progressive house, and a set of classics from the veteran producer is a memorable treat for anyone lucky enough to witness the increasingly-rare event.
Set Time: Sunday, 6:10pm, A State of Trance
Rabbit in the Moon
Rabbit in the Moon will return to Ultra for the first time in six years, taking to the Live Stage for the penultimate performance from Sunday. The legendary ’90s dance act were UMF’s very first headliner back in 1999, and have continued to grace the festival over the years intermittently. The duo took a hiatus from performing together in late 2009, but will reunite for a special performance from Ultra. This one will be worth it for the nostalgia factor alone — not to mention the pair’s notoriously psychedelic on-stage antics.
Set Time: Sunday, 8:50pm, Live Stage
Ultra has entrusted full confidence in young Martin Garrix, granting him the headlining slot on the first day of the festival — a main stage position typically reserved for dance heavyweight Tiësto. The Dutch wunderkind isn’t taking the opportunity lightly either, having already announced that he will premiere around 8 or 9 unreleased songs during his set. With a new album on the horizon, this will be the surest venue yet to receive a taste of what Garrix has inbound for the rest of the year.
Set Time: Friday, 11:00pm, Mainstage
For the greater part of the last 4 months, Marco Carola has called Miami his home, commanding a 16-week residency at Story Nightclub. The Italian techno legend’s coveted series, Music On, culminates on Saturday, but not before Carola delivers a two-hour peaktime set from the Carl Cox & Friends Arena. There is perhaps no better venue than Cox’s monolithic stage structure for Carola’s demolishing taste in techno, and expect Carola to be in full-form before his residency from Story culminates later that night.
Set Time: Saturday, 8:00pm, Carl Cox & Friends Arena
You can never go wrong catching progressive house legend John Digweed, and a set from the Resistance Stage should be nothing short of spell-binding.
Jauz’s daytime set last year proved a raucous affair. Expect plenty of unreleased tunes and maybe even surprise guests to accompany his nighttime set.
The Prodigy never fail to put on a riotous live show, and with a closing slot from the Live Stage on Saturday, one can’t help but expect a crazy performance.
Lebanese techno queen Nicole Moudaber will take the reigns of the Carl Cox & Friends Arena on Saturday to usher in some of her delectably dark beats.